California Dreams Backpacker's Hostel

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The Review

The best part about California Dreams Backpacker's Hostel is where it is -- if you want a cool place to crash near the action, California Dreams is the place you're looking for.

The Location

This hostel is at the heart of Pacific Beach; once you park, you won't need your car again. Walk a hundred yards to the staircase leading to the beach if you want to surf and have fun on the beach. At night, go right across the street to one of the four bars you can see from the front door of the hostel. Walk (or drive) up Garnet or Grand streets to hit up one of a thousand local restaurants. Parking is free on the street at the hostel, but you have to be aware of signs, street cleaning, and other time restrictions. There is little/no on-site parking.

Rooms and Bathrooms

The rooms are classic hostel style -- there's a walking strip between rows of beds. The good thing is that these beds are larger than normal (full size, if we had to guess) and are built into the walls so they are very sturdy and secure. They are also separated by the actual wall, making each bed a private little pod. Perhaps the best part of the bed is the wall outlet right next to a small shelf above your head, making it easy to charge your phone overnight.

Bathrooms are small and have a hook or two -- just the basics. The showers are in separate rooms from the toilet, so guests can still use the bathroom if someone's taking a long shower.

Common Spaces

There are two kitchens and they're both small. But they are fully loaded and have everything you could need including a table where you can eat. Out front, there is some outdoor seating and that San Diego sun that's always shining. In the back is a small "backyard" with a seating and a BBQ for grilling with your new hosteler friends. There is a lot of people coming in and out and moving around, but it still feels safe and secure. The hostel's location directly off a busy street, a staff that work late, and good lighting outside are helpful.


The staff was nice and helpful and the check-in process is easy. The main office is comfortable and has a couple couches where you can hang out. For the price and the location alone, California Dreams is everything you could ask of a hostel -- a crash pad with a good vibe and clean environment.
by Mike M Staff Reviewer
Photos taken by the reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.
Front Counter
One of two kitchens

How is California Dreams Backpacker's Hostel rated on other websites?

  Cleanliness Location Atmosphere Overall
(93 ratings)
(13 ratings)
Not listed on HostelsClub.
(10 ratings)

Sorry this hostel has closed.

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San Diego Hostels